Native Sacred Sites Bill Passes (politics)

Native American sacred site bill passes

Assemblyman Luis Alejo 'extremely pleased'

A bill that originally upset local Native Americans has been signed into law after significant changes.

AB 52, co-authored by Assemblyman Luis Alejo, D-Watsonville, was signed by Gov. Jerry Brown last week.

"The first few versions of this bill were contentious; however, we worked with all stakeholders and tribes," Alejo said in a statement. "I am extremely pleased to note that the bill includes support of almost all of California's tribes — both federally recognized and unrecognized — to ensure that the cultural heritage of all Native American people is protected."

Assemblyman Mike Gatto, D-Los Angeles, was the bill's principal author.

The legislation changes the California Environmental Quality Act to require the lead agency on a project for environmental assessments to consult with a Native American tribe within 30 days of receiving their request.

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